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Musing, marketing, and meaning in the connected world.

On the Eve of Marketing 2.0, the Dawn of Marketing 3.0?

I’m en route to the Marketing 2.0 conference in Paris, one of the most respected gatherings of marketing executives presenting and discussing the latest trends in their field. In a way, the story of the conference is the story of marketing itself. The somewhat yesteryear name indicates that a few years ago, when Marketing 2.0 premiered, it was conceived as a forum for pioneers who were early on embracing digital marketing and social media. Times have changed. What used to be at the fringes of the profession has moved into the mainstream, and both program and attendees of Marketing 2.0 reflect that. That’s not a bad thing. Digital marketing IS marketing, social media IS media. You would think...

The Remembering Self Reflects on Happiness and Morality at TED

TED conferences, you might think, are happy affairs. You get up early, meet the most fascinating people, listen to jaw-dropping talks (each followed by a standing ovation), have deep conversations, and party until dawn – and all of that for four days in a row, safely remote from your usual daily routine. The reality, however, is more complicated. The event is a physical and mental stress test, an emotional rollercoaster ride that challenges you with constant over-stimulation, extreme cross-pollination, and tidal waves of acceptance and rejection as you navigate the social networks in the conference’s “social spaces.” To slightly paraphrase Heidi Klum: “With one group you’re in, with the next group you’re out.” And yet you will never hear anyone who was lucky enough to attend TED come back and not rave about their experience. Why is that? Daniel Kahneman, the mastermind of Behavioral Economics, provided the answer – at TED2010: TEDsters are happy because they expect to be happy. Let me explain, or rather, let Daniel Kahneman explain.

Walking Into a Forest With a Match

For Wired UK’s “Work Smarter” issue (just released), I had the pleasure to speak with John Winsor, co-founder and CEO of Victors & Spoils (V&S), the world’s first creative (ad) agency built on crowdsourcing principles. You can find a shortened article in the Wired UK magazine. Here’s the interview in full length.

Shyness and the Need to Reshape Relationships through Passion

John Hagel, one of my favorite business thinkers, has written a great post on how the "big shift" (from a world "where stocks of knowledge and short-lived transactions are the key to success" to a world "where participation in many, diverse flows of knowledge and long-term, trust-based relationships determine success") puts shy people – like him, as he admits – at a significant disadvantage.

The Grand Disappointment

Apple and Obama after Hype and Hope


Some languages are more precise than others. German's word for disappointment, “Enttäuschung,” for example, literally translates as “disillusion” and thus implies that the prerequisite of any disappointment is excessive (and false!) expectation. As if that needed any further evidence, Apple’s iPad presentation and President Obama’s first State of the Union address last Wednesday marked the preliminary culmination of an obvious trend: disappointment as a widespread sentiment and cultural subtext at the dawn of this young decade. Both Apple and Obama are among the most powerful brands of our time and occupy that vexing space between hype and hope in the public mind. Both have zealous fans and followers, and enjoy an almost religious admiration. And both have now suffered a very public deflation, a humiliating erosion of their once unflappable appeal of invincibility, a painful rejection of love.

Privacy Is Over. Here Comes Sociality.

As widely discussed by privacy advocates and blogs, Facebook recently changed some of its privacy settings. Users are no longer able to limit the viewing of their profile photos, home towns, and friends lists to only approved friends. Those are all public now by default. Moreover, Facebook’s new default settings “recommend” that dynamic content such as status messages and photos be made public. While the blogosphere still closely scrutinizes these changes and is aghast at Mark Zuckerberg’s ‘privacy is over’ claims made at the Crunchies awards (he didn’t actually say it verbatim but his statements more or less implied it), I have to admit I was surprised that all this stirred such an uproar. Facebook is only reacting to a larger social trend as it strives to become an asymmetrical and therefore more growth-enabled network (or communications platform) – like Twitter. Privacy, at least a more traditional notion thereof, is the collateral damage of this strategic agenda. With the value of reciprocity (narrowcasting) succumbing to the prospect of exponentiality (broadcasting), privacy is no longer commercially exploitable. “No one makes money off of creating private communities in an era of ‘free,’” writes social networking researcher Danah Boyd in a blog post in which she otherwise harshly criticizes Facebook’s move. The age of privacy as we know it might be over indeed. Is it worth fighting for?

Twitter Grows Up In the Aftermath of Haiti Earthquake

In the wake of the devastating 7.0 earthquake in Haiti, Twitter has been serving as a main hub of information, the Nielsen Company reports. Nielsen refers to preliminary analysis of data indicating that Twitter posts are the leading source of discussion about the quake, followed by online video, blogs, and other social media.

In Search of the People Formerly Known as The Audience

Our friends from the Norman Lear Center in L.A. have put together a comprehensive primer on the "Business and Culture of Social Media." If you're intrigued by social media as entertainment and want to learn more about the notion of "mass self-communication," take a look at the presentation that Lear Center deputy director Johanna Blakley and director Marty Kaplan gave at the Barcelona Media Center.

Lego iPhone App Transforms Photos Into Bricks

Lego just released a free iPhone app that lets users transform their pictures into brick-like creations. The app uses the phone’s built-in camera. Once snapped, the photo quickly builds brick by brick into a mosaic made from flat Lego bricks. The mosaics come in a variety of color combinations and can be saved and shared through the phone.

[via design boom]

Goodbye No-Name-Decade

Now that its end is near (at least in the Western hemisphere), all of a sudden everyone seems to have plenty of time to reflect on a decade that up to this point has constantly been moving too fast to be reflected upon. It was an odd one, too, and in her excellent New Yorker piece Rebecca Mead muses: “In retrospect, it might be recognized as a troubling harbinger that, ten years ago, no consensus could be reached in this country on what to call the decade upon which we were about to embark. The ohs? The double-ohs? The zeros? The zips? The nadas? The naughties?”